Indianapolis—It was late Saturday morning when the sun finally broke through the dense haze to beam sizzling heat on the Smock Golf Club.

By then, the lady golfers had burned up two and half hours of golf, and embellished some hot numbers on Regional round scorecards in the 44th Annual IHSAA Girls Golf Tournament.

The North Montgomery Lady Chargers shot 432, and did not advance to the State Finals. Similarly, none of the Montgomery County contestants qualified individually for further play.

Westfield earned top honors, shooting 297 behind the scorching 64 (-8) by the Shamrocks’ ace Cailyn Henderson.

Megan Douglas led the Chargers, as she has consistently this season, with a 90.

“I putted a little better on my back nine.” The Chargers’ junior said, who struggled a bit out of the gates, like her teammates.

The Chargers limped through the front nine, experiencing some tournament jitters.

North Montgomery joined most of the state’s elite golfers on the admired south-side course. In addition to the 2015 State Runners-up, and current no. 1 ranked Westfield Shamrocks, six more of the state’s top ranked teams funneled into Regional Four.

No. 3 Carmel (315) and no. 5 Zionsville (326) were the other two teams advancing to State Finals, next week at Carmel’s Prairie View Golf Course. Brownsburg’s Abby Cody (77), Plainfield’s Kayla Benge (77), Daniell Fishburn (79) of Ben Davis, Plainfield’s Tori Treash (81), and Alexandria Marks (81) of Terre Haute North qualified individually.  Brebeuf’s Bailey Jackson also shot 81, but is appealing an incorrect scorecard, and may advance.

“That’s pretty stiff competition, for pretty young girls.” A resigned Chargers head coach, Jason Douglas said. “It’s tough for them—they didn’t perform their best, but that’s okay.”

Scout Groves, the Chargers’ lone senior, finished second for the Chargers, shooting a 105. Taylor Miller (114), Jaycee Walden (123) and Chloe Maxwell (133) completed the North Montgomery scoring. Each of the Chargers girls improved their scores considerably on their back nine.

“Yeah, I do think the (girls) got the butterflies out a little bit.” Jason assessed. “This was a first time experience for three of them.”

Once they eased their nerves, the girls still had to negotiate the 4,533 yard course. Which is a task made more difficult, because North Montgomery rarely gets to play 18 holes in an outing.

“This course played long.” Megan said, emphasizing with a sigh more than a little fatigue following her finishing hole.

With one junior, two sophomores and two freshman returning next season, coach Douglas hopes the Regional experience will carry the Chargers into next year.

“I just hope they improve some in the off-season.” Jason said. “I gave them a little bit of a goal for next year, so we’ll just have to see how that works.”

Montgomery County’s only other golfer on course was Crawfordsville’s Olivia Grady. The senior competed as an individual qualifier, and shot a 98, scoring a 48 on the back nine.

“That was actually my goal coming in.” Grady said. “I knew I probably wasn’t going to break my personal best, because this is a tough course.”

“I just wanted to come in, and meet some cool girls and have fun.” Grady continued. “If I had putted better, I would have shot closer to 45 (in each round).”

Putting was a problem shared by many of the golfers. The greens were fast, and if the ball was resting above the hole, it was hard to gauge the speed.

“Some of them had some pretty hard slopes, too.” Grady said, who finally found her putting stroke on the last hole, ending her career with a par that made her head coach shudder.

“A par on her last hole.” Roger Tribbett exclaimed. “Now that’s a way to end a career!”

Grady will move on to Indiana University in Bloomington to further her studies.

Despite stopping in the Regionals, Grady sees her senior year run as very successful.

“I’ve never shot in the 90’s until this year.” Grady said. “So to get through Sectionals, and play pretty well in the Regionals, I consider this year a success.”

Grady admits that she will not be on the women’s golf team at IU, but is proud to know that golf is a sport she can play forever.